All Saints Day Means
Holiness for All
By Marcellino D’Ambrosio, Ph.D.
10/31/2011 - Halloween
Can Catholics celebrate Halloween? In this interview, Dr. Marcellino D’Ambrosio explains the origins of Halloween as a Christian rather than pagan celebration, as often supposed. Teresa Tomeo and Dr. Italy also discuss how Catholics can best use these special days of Oct 31st, Nov 1st and 2nd, to recover the original mean of the feasts of All Saints and All Souls day, allowing them to remind us that ALL are called to the heights of holiness and that life in this world will some day come to an end for each of us but that, for the Catholic, death is a door, not the end of the story.
A reflection on the meaning of Feast or Solemnity of All Saints , November 1 in the Roman Catholic Calendar, otherwise known as All Saints Day.
At age 16, I thought that aspiring to holiness was out of the question. If you really wanted to be holy, I thought, you had to be a priest, nun, or brother. And you had to spend your days doing “religious stuff” like praying, preaching, teaching catechism, or serving the poor. But I had developed an interest in the opposite sex and was headed toward a career in music. So I was disqualified. The best I could hope for was to avoid breaking the 10 commandments, get to confession when I failed, not miss Mass on Sunday and toss a few bucks in the collection each week. That way, I could at least make it to heaven after a stay in Purgatory. But true sanctity, that was out of my reach.
If holiness were about marital status or what you did for a living, I would have been right But the Second Vatican Council made very clear that my assumptions were wrong. Holiness is not about what you do but with how much love you do it. Holiness is really the perfection of faith, hope, and sharing in God’s very nature, which is love (I John 4:8). We are talking about a special kind of love here, the love that gives freely of itself to another, that even lays down its own priorities, interests, and very life, for another.
So is holiness difficult to attain? No. It is impossible. At least on our own steam. But that’s the thrill of it all. God invites us into an intimate relationship with Him through Jesus. He takes up residence within us and makes it possible to love with His love. Grace is the love of God that comes into our hearts as a free, undeserved gift and enables us to be like God.
So that means spending all our time in chapel? No it means doing daily, ordinary things with extraordinary love. The Virgin Mary, our greatest example of holiness, was a housewife and a mother. Jesus and his foster father, St. Joseph, apparently spend most of their lives doing manual labor. But when Mary did the wash, she did it for love When Joseph made a table, he did it for love. When hardship and danger threatened, they met it with faith, hope, and love.
So holiness is for every baptized person, regardless of personality type, career, age, race, or marital status. In baptism, we are all reborn with the spiritual muscles necessary to get us across the finish line. Yet these muscles must be nourished and exercised if they are ever to develop and carry us the full distance. God provides the necessary nourishment in the Word of God and the Eucharist. And he sends us ample opportunities to exercise.
But there’s the rub–many of us don’t want to exert ourselves. It can be uncomfortable. We stretch a bit to finish school, to excel at sports, to win the heart of the love of our lives. But when it comes to the things of the Spirit, we often settle with being couch potatoes.
Leon Bloy, a French Catholic writer, once said “the only tragedy in life is not to become a saint.” Holiness is about realizing our deepest, greatest potential, becoming who we were truly destined to be. What a shame it would be to miss it.
This was originally published in Catholic News Service’s syndicated column, Faith Alive as a reflection on the Solemnity or Feast of All Saints Day and is used here by permission of the author.
Be sure to check out the Catholic Saints Library!
Come read -
The Truth About Halloween
The Importance of Saints - By Saint Bernard of Clairvaux
Also check out -
All Soul's Day!
Be a part of the “new springtime” of evangelization! Your tax-deductible gift helps us use TV, radio, and the web to proclaim the message without compromise but in language even the young can understand. Click here to donate now.
Follow Us -
Join us on Facebook
Join us on Twitter
Click here to download, print and share All Saints Day!
For more Catholic resources to feed your faith, visit the Crossroads Initiative Homepage.
To sign up for our free weekly e-mail with Dr. D'Ambrosio's commentary on the Sunday readings, liturgical feasts, updates on where Dr. D will be speaking, a chance to WIN a FREE CD and MORE, CLICK HERE!
I Believe - The Heart of the Catholic Faith - DVD Set
In this dynamic, four-part faith formation series, on the Creed, Dr. D'Ambrosio explains how this expression of the basic beliefs of Roman Catholicism is relevant to our personal relationship with God.
How Mary and the Rosary Can Change Your Life
by: Dr. Marcellino D'Ambrosio
Talk 1: The Virgin Mary: Model of Faith
Some Christians seem to neglect her; others seem overly preoccupied with her. What is the true role of Mary in God's plan, her intended role in our lives now, and the proper form of devotion to her? In this talk, Dr. D'Ambrosio provides enlightening and inspiring answers to these questions from Scripture, common sense and the teaching of the Church.
Talk 2: A Fresh Look at The Rosary
There is something here for everyone-- those who have problems with the rosary, and those who've read every book on the subject. Drawing from scripture, history, Church teaching and personal experience, Dr. D'Ambrosio shares insights in this talk that will forever change the way you look at and experience this traditional devotion.
Kitty Cleveland-The Miracle of Love Rosary
Our hope is that The Miracle of Love Rosary CD will lead you into a deeper state of union with out Lord as you contemplate with Mary the face of Christ. We pray that the mediations will deepen you appreciation for the gift of life, which is truly a Miracle of Love, and strengthen your commitment to defend life in all its stages.
Personal Prayer - Pathway to Joy - CD
Everyone knows that personal prayer is important. You can't expect to deepen a relationship with God talking with Him only once a week! But how, in the midst of the busy, noisy life we all lead, can we develop a pattern of daily prayer that really works? And if we are successful in carving out some moments for prayer, what do we do? How should we spend that time in way that would be most fruitful?
BioLean® of the BioLean® Weight Management System - free-shipping
Ephedra-free BioLean®, of the BioLean® Weight Management System, is an excellent natural choice to help jump-start your healthy lifestyle. Designed to help curb your cravings, promote healthy energy levels, and satisfy your appetite, BioLean® is powered by Advantra Z®, the only patented citrus aurantium extract for weight loss on the market today. The great thing about BioLean® is that is can help reduce body fat even while promoting the development of lean muscle mass --the only path to long-term, healthy weight loss.